Yes but usually the word that describes the type of shelter would precede the word shelter. For example homeless shelter and animal shelter. Hope this helps answer your question. If you ever need to find the definition of any English word the Webster's dictionary is online or in print and is a great resource.
As far as I know (I am not a native speaker, but I've used English a lot both professionally and personally and studied it for a long time) it is any place that offers safety against any harmful conditions, including in metaphorical terms: a baby that finds shelter in his mother's arms or a library is a shelter for free minds